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Can a forest garden exist in a northern temperate climate? Yes!

 
gardener
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Location: Fraser River Headwaters, Zone3, Lat: 53N, Altitude 2750', Boreal/Temperate Rainforest-transition
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I've heard it said that the sort of environment that I live in does not support the concept of food forests.  Certainly, a vegan diet would have been unlikely in pre-colonial times at latitude 53, but what if I was to tell you that indigenous people at latitude 54 in my hometown area of Terrace, B.C. not only had food forests near their village sites but that some of these places have remained resilient self-replicating systems after a century of abandonment?  Unheard of, you say?  After all, the forest would simply eat up any garden space in no time and the Indigenous peoples of this region were not horticulturalists but were hunter-gatherers, relying extensively on Salmon runs and wild berry patches.  Sure they tended the berry patches and occasionally rejuvenated them with selective burning, but practice horticulture?  Yes; while it is true that hunting and gathering based on salmon and berries were the mainstay staple food resources, what is also true is the recent discovery and study of certain sites that not only show that horticulture was being practiced, but that such work was highly skilled, increasing harvest yields and creating guilds not found in nature. Here is a quick article done for The Tyee  

The Brief from Simon Fraser University

The Study from SFU published in Ecology and Society






 
master pollinator
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Location: Officially Zone 7b, according to personal obsevations I live in 7a, SW Tennessee
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That is awesome! Please update us on those the project progresses.
 
Roberto pokachinni
gardener
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Location: Fraser River Headwaters, Zone3, Lat: 53N, Altitude 2750', Boreal/Temperate Rainforest-transition
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I do have hopes that I can replicate some of these systems on my own property.  Many of the plants that are present in the plots that were studied are also native to this region, and some of them grow on my property already.  I am hopeful, also to be a part of an indigenous food resurgence in a local valley that I am trying to help protect.  More about that will no doubt be shared if it transpires.  

That is awesome!

Thanks for your encouragement.

Please update us

I will update this thread if I find any additional information or if something relevant comes up in my networking.
 
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